My husband hates heights. I’m planning a trip to the Dolomites (he’s such a sport and knows I love mountains), but we need to avoid chairlifts. We’ll be staying in Ortesei. We want to see the great views. but need enclosed gondola lifts, no chair lifts. Are chair lifts very common? Are there any lifts that start as enclosed, but you need to change to chair lifts mid way up the mountain. That would be a terrible surprise, because he would feel like he had to continue for my sake.
Although I can’t answer your question at all, I wonder whether any chairlifts, if they exist, have an overhead bar that swings down to sit above everyone’s laps? Riders would still be out in the open, not enclosed, but would have a “safety bar” to help secure them, and some bars even have foot pegs, allowing even more stability while riding.
We were in only gondolas and even cog trains going up the mountains to hike in Ortesei late May, early June years ago. I never saw chairlifts and dislike them too.
There are some chairlifts (with restraining bars) up on Alpe di Siusi which are open to hikers, but the main lifts towards Seceda and Alpe di Siusi from Ortisei are indeed enclosed. Same for others in the region (Sass Pordoi, Marmolada...). Therefore chairlifts are easily avoided! A chairlift is "Seggiovia" in Italian and "Sesselbahn" (often abbreviated to SB) in German, if you are looking at signs.
Thanks for asking this. Helpful and informative answers. I am not good with chairlifts.
So many places you can go in gondolas, large and small. There is also a nice funicular to Rasciesa that never leaves the ground. Have fuN!
My husband is also fearful of heights and would not go in a gondola or chair lift. So we stayed in Castelrotto, specifically because there is a bus that goes directly to the Alpe di Siusi. It was easy, inexpensive and we absolutely loved hiking in the Alpe di Siusi. If you are really committed to staying in Ortesei and you will have a car, it is an easy drive to Castelrotto to catch the bus.
Ortisei is probably a great place if you’re ok with enclosed gondolas. Someone mentioned the Secada one on one side near the town. It was a series of two gondolas to get to the top where the views are spectacular. I walked around, got lunch, and took another gondola down. Look up Raiser (or something like that- to the right on a map from Secada). Then it’s a bus back to Ortisei. South of town is the gondola up to the Alpi. All these are enclosed. There are some open air ski lifts on the alpi but these aren’t needed to enjoy the views. You can even do the Alpi gondola up, wander over the Compasch (sp?) and take that gondola down, assuming there are buses from the Seiser Alm bottom back to Ortisei. It would be a day and you’d need to verify the times of the gondolas to make sure you don’t miss the last one, but it’s totally doable with time for lunch.